A Case Study of Propeller-Induced Currents and Sediment Transport in a Small Harbor

by Bradley K. Paulson, CH2M Hill, Bellevue, United States,
Steven L. Da Costa, CH2M Hill, Bellevue, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: World Marina '91


The operation of vessels in marinas and small harbors can provide important driving forces affecting ambient circulation patterns and current speeds near the bottom. The case study on propeller-induced currents described in this paper was done in a small, semi-enclosed embayment located in western Washington State. A numerical model was used to quantify the initiation of sediment motion by predicting the current velocities induced by the propeller of a ferry during maneuvering and loading operations. The model results indicate that the area of maximum bottom velocity and maximum scour effect depends primarily upon water depth and vessel draft. Propeller-induced flows can also lead to the transport of sediment in suspension or along the bottom, especially when these flows act together with tidal or wind-driven currents.

Subject Headings: Case studies | Sediment transport | Tides | Ports and harbors | Fluid velocity | Suspended sediment | Numerical models | Traffic speed | Washington | United States

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